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Bengals News (9/12): Defense huge bright spot

The Bengals defense at least did an incredible job in Week 1.

Pittsburgh Steelers v Cincinnati Bengals Photo by Andy Lyons/Getty Images

Bengals Notes From Opener: Money Mac, Joe Burrow, Stingy Defense
The day that began with him breaking his own Bengals field-goal record with a 59-yard-first-quarter projectile ended with him yanking a 29-yard-field goal attempt that would have won it with 3:32 left in overtime of the 23-20 loss to the Steelers in front of a sold-out, all-out Paycor Stadium.

Steelers vs. Bengals score, takeaways: Mitch Trubisky, Pittsburgh sink Cincy in OT for wild Week 1 win
With Clark Harris, the Bengals' long snapper, injured, Cincinnati missed its game-winning field goal attempt in overtime. Pittsburgh, however, was unable to make its first game-winning attempt when Boswell's 55-yard attempt hit the left crossbar 70 seconds after Evan McPherson missed a 29-yard attempt. McPherson, who lost Harris during regulation, had his game-winning point-after attempt blocked by Minkah Fitzpatrick with two seconds left in regulation to force overtime. Prior to the miss, the Bengals tied the score on Joe Burrow's six-yard touchdown pass to Ja'Marr Chase.

As it happened: Bengals face off against Steelers in 2022 season opener
The 2022 Cincinnati Bengals season is one of the most anticipated in decades and they get a stiff, immediate test, opening at home against their fiercest rival in the Pittsburgh Steelers. Excitement is high around the Queen City and beyond, with the Bengals looking to prove to the country that they're the real deal.

Bengals fail to challenge possible game-tying TD catch, then lose to Steelers in OT
Here's how it went down. With 2:52 left in the game and on the Steelers 13-yard line, Burrow threw to Ja'Marr Chase on 2nd-and-10. Chase snagged the pass and his foot came down on the white line separating the end zone from the field. The referee called the pass complete, but just short of the goal. You can see him put the ball down at least a foot away from where Chase's foot actually landed, paying absolutely no attention to whether the ball actually broke the plane.

Bengals' Tee Higgins exits Steelers game after big hit, ruled out with concussion
Higgins caught both of his targets for 27 yards prior to sustaining the injury. A major part of the Bengals offense, Higgins caught 74 passes for 1,091 yards and six touchdowns last season, his second in Cincinnati. He caught an additional 18 passes for 309 yards and two touchdowns in the playoffs as the Bengals advanced to Super Bowl LVI.

Steelers vs. Bengals score, game recap, Week 1: Everything we know
But despite a rough first half, those Bengals charged back and forced overtime. Granted, that overtime doesn’t happen and the Bengals straight-up win if their long-snapper wasn’t injured.

Around the league

2022 NFL season, Week 1: What We Learned from Sunday's games
Bucs defense wins Sunday night. Tom Brady wasn't sensational, but he looked good enough to do away with the doubts produced by a chaotic offseason. But it was the Buccaneers defense that truly won the night for Tampa Bay. Facing last year's No. 1 offense, the Bucs swarmed and overwhelmed the Cowboys. While Micah Parsons (two sacks) commanded notice for the Dallas D, Tampa Bay had a host of contributors, from Devin White (eight tackles, two sacks) to Antoine Winfield Jr. (six tackles, one interception) to Shaquil Barrett (six QB pressures). Todd Bowles' defense dictated this game, limiting the Cowboys to their lowest point total since Week 7 of 2020. Tampa allowed just 244 yards of offense, held Dallas to 3 of 15 on third down and didn't surrender a single point after Dallas' opening possession. The game ball goes to the TB D in this one.

Cowboys QB Dak Prescott (throwing hand) requires surgery, to miss several weeks
Cowboys quarterback Dak Prescott suffered an injury to his throwing hand against the Buccaneers that will require surgery and sideline him for several weeks, team owner Jerry Jones said Sunday night after Dallas' loss to Tampa Bay.

Giants coach Brian Daboll on two-point decision: 'Going for the win. We're going to be aggressive'
"Going for the win," Daboll said, via the team's official website. "We're going to be aggressive. That's what we want to do. That's the mindset I want the players to have. If it didn't work, I can live with it. I thought that was the right decision. You're an inch away or whatever it was. I trust Saquon."

Panthers' Baker Mayfield eyes bigger goal after coming up short in bid for revenge against Browns
Baker Mayfield was once that for the Browns and he will spend this season trying to prove he should be that again for the Panthers, or whoever else would like to sign him after this season, when he's due to become a free agent. His bitter departure from Cleveland, and the furious fourth-quarter comeback he nearly pulled off on Sunday, gave the Browns' 26-24 victory over the Panthers its undercurrent of import for two teams that otherwise looked flawed enough that both could struggle to remain in playoff contention.